Photo credit: St. Johnn Blondell. Actors from left to right: Michele Osherow, Steve LaRocque, Jane Squier Bruns.
This past summer, The Quotidian Theatre in Bethesda hosted the U.S. premiere of Conor McPherson’s play “The Veil,” which debuted in 2011 at London’s National Theatre. The description of the play is as follows on the Quotidian website: “Set in a haunted mansion in rural Ireland in 1822, surrounded by a restive, starving populace, ‘The Veil’ weaves Ireland’s troubled colonial history into a transfixing story about the search for love, the transcendental, and the circularity of time.”
Michele Osherow, an associate professor of English, played the widowed Lady Lambroke, the owner of the Irish country manor where the play takes place. Osherow and other cast members received a strong review in the Washington Post for their work: “LaRocque’s Rev. Berkeley, Decker’s Mr. Audelle, Osherow’s Lady Lambroke and Mayo’s Hannah are all well-rounded characterizations, their lines spoken with unstilted English and Irish accents.“
The play ran from July 18-August 17 and in addition to the Washington Post, it received praise from MD Theatre Guide, DC Theatre Scene, Broadway World, and DC Metro Theatre Arts. To read more of the reviews and find more information about “The Veil,” click here.
Osherow has extensive experience in professional theatre and serves as the Resident Dramaturg for the Folger Theatre in Washington, D.C. She received a 2012 best actress nomination from D.C. Theatre Scene for her work in Brian Friel’s Afterplay (Quotidian Theatre).
Eric Dyer, Visual Arts, will be featured in a solo exhibition at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts in New York. His work Copenhagen Cycles: 2006 – 2014 will be on display from September 6 through October 11, with an opening reception on September 6 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Information is available at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts. The exhibition received a preview article on August 15 in Wall Street International.
The Before Columbus Foundation has announced the winners of its 35th Annual American Book Awards. The prestigious American Book Awards were created to provide recognition for outstanding literary achievement from the entire spectrum of America’s diverse literary community. The purpose of the awards is to recognize literary excellence without limitations or restrictions.
Tanya Olson, a lecturer in UMBC’s English department, received a 2014 American Book Award for her book Boyishly, published by YesYes Books in May 2013. The book is a collection of poems which explores personal and public constructions of gender, violence, and America and it received the following review from “Good Reads”:
“Tanya Olson’s BOYISHLY is a magic book. It casts a spell upon you. Olson uses language like Gertrude Stein does, building large monuments of sound into humming lattices, where a ‘whale will do as a whale will do, ‘ or where ‘tree forms shapes for tiger’ and ‘tiger takes shape / under tree.’ In this book, Olson writes poems to a future America from beyond the planetary gravestone, where there is only a ‘boyish summer’ and the ‘boyish waters.’ The voice says come back to me. I am not done with you. I was waiting for you all along.”–Dorothea Lasky
Olson will be formally recognized for her award on Sunday, October 26 at the SF Jazz Center, Joe Henderson Lab in San Francisco, California. For more information on the 2014 American Book Awards and to see the complete list of recipients, click here. You can read more about the Before Columbus Foundation here.
The National Heritage Museum in Lexington, Massachusetts contains exhibitions, collections and programs based on American history, traditions and culture. It contains the Van Gorden-Williams Library, a research library specializing in American Freemasonry.
As part of the museum’s series on its collection of historic maps, Public Policy Professor John Rennie Short will present an upcoming lecture entitled, “Cartographic Encounters: Native Americans in the Exploration and Mapping of North America.” Short, an expert on the history of cartography, will discuss how Native Americans were an essential element in the European and American exploration and mapping of North America in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. He will use diaries and official reports in describing the role of indigenous people in mapping and exploration. Specifically, Short will focus on Native Americans’ roles as guides, informants and mapmakers.
The lecture is scheduled for Saturday, October 4 at 2:00 p.m. at the National Heritage Museum. For more information, click here.
On Tuesday, April 26, faculty, staff, administrators and current students welcomed new students to the UMBC community at Convocation 2014, beginning with an applause-filled parade through campus and concluding with celebratory remarks in the RAC.
Vice Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Education Diane Lee, Presidential Teaching Award Recipient Marie desJardins and President Hrabowski spoke about UMBC’s supportive campus culture. “This is a university where people care about each other,” Dr. Hrabowksi said.
Student leaders provided advice to incoming Retrievers. Student Government Association President Ganesh Mysore and Caroline Taylor ’16, HAPP, shared stories from their college experiences, encouraging their fellow students to be get involved in campus activities and organizations.
Watch the Convocation ceremony below.
UMBC and Loyola University Maryland’s Sellinger School of Business and Management are establishing Kiva U microfinance programs, made possible by grants from OneMain Financial, that will offer loans to local and global communities in need.
The $25,000 grants will make UMBC and Loyola’s Sellinger School the first two formally designated Kiva U chapters in Maryland. Kiva U seeks to engage students and educators in a global effort to expand financial inclusion, foster community, and have a tangible positive impact on issues that matter to them.
UMBC is quickly building a national reputation as a hub for scholars committed to making a difference as socially engaged community leaders and global citizens. Under the auspices of BreakingGround, UMBC’s civic engagement initiative, and UMBC’s Shriver Center, students will work with faculty and staff to develop a management team that will create marketing strategies and engage campus partners to support local, national and international communities. Planning began this summer, with the goal of awarding the first round of up to 10 loans in spring 2015.
David Hoffman, assistant director of student life for civic agency, says, “The Kiva project matches the spirit of BreakingGround, as well as the mission of UMBC, perfectly. It will put our students in a position to take real responsibility for nurturing entrepreneurial efforts that can help transform lives and communities.”
Click here to read more.
History Professor Kate Brown will speak at this year’s Baltimore Book Festival, which runs from September 26-28. The festival features hundreds of appearances from local, celebrity and nationally-known authors. More than 100 exhibitors and booksellers will be on hand at the festival with readings, workshops and panel discussions also on the agenda.
Brown is scheduled to present a talk on Friday, September 26 at 7 p.m. as part of the Ivy Bookshop author tent. She will be discussing her award-winning book, Plutopia: Nuclear Families, Atomic Cities, and the Great Soviet and American Plutonium Disasters (Oxford University Press, 2013), in which she tells the stories of Hanford, Washington and Ozersk, Russia. The Soviet and American governments created these communities to produce the plutonium that fueled the nuclear arms race during the Cold War.
Earlier this year, Brown was awarded the 2014 Ellis W. Hawley Prize from the Organization of American Historians (OAH) for the best book-length historical study of the political economy, politics, or institutions of the United States, in its domestic or international affairs, from the Civil War to the present. She also received the American Society for Environmental History’s George Perkins Marsh Prize for the best book in environmental history.
For more information on the Baltimore Book Festival, click here.